I’m an artist from Iceland, where I live and work. I’m an actress, wife and mother of four.
I have been painting now for 6 years but only recently made it my main job. I love experimenting with colors and textures in my work and seek to find the perfect balance.
When did you start doing art?
Johanna: Probably when I was about 12 years old.
Is there some story behind it? What did you want to become as a child?
Johanna: I think I have always had the need to create, as a child I wanted to be an actress and photographer so naturally I studied filmmaking and acting but painted and wrote poetry on the side. After I graduated from film school, I got a job as a travel consultant as I needed a steady income but took all the acting projects I could manage. After a while, I realized that I needed to do something more as the urge to create something more and from my heart got bigger and bigger. Last two years I have been focusing more on my art and the “hobby” has turned into my main job. Today I paint every day, all day, and get restless if I do not.
Tell us about your artwork, medium, style, subject matter etc.
Johanna: I love colors and finding new ways to make opposite colors go together. I try not to get stuck in one style as I am easily bored and need new challenges. I usually do not decide the outcome of each painting before I start and look at each new canvas as a journey to discover, somedays it works out perfectly but on other I just end up painting over my work repeatedly.
What is a day of working like in your studio? Do you have any rituals that help you get motivated or in “the zone”?
Johanna: My typical workday starts with a good cup of coffee. I do not need to travel far to go to work as my studio is in our garage. As soon as I have looked over yesterday’s work, I turn on some good music that I can dance to as well as paint and start creating.
What personality trait do you have that has been most helpful in your art career?
Johanna: Thankfully, I have a lot of patience which helps me through the days when nothing is happening on the canvas as well as being an optimist.
What’s the most challenging part of your artistic process? And how do you overcome it?
Johanna: For me, it is the days when I feel a little less inspired. I just force myself to keep on going and tell myself that the canvas is just still deciding on the outcome. It is funny how you can trick your mind that way as I am always super excited to see the outcome.
How might someone feel differently about the world after looking at your artworks?
Johanna: I have heard people talk about how they can get lost in my paintings, almost as they are in a daydream. Others have told me that they don’t need to understand everything but just enjoy and take in the feelings that they experience, which I think is a good way of thinking.
You are a wife and a mother of 4, as well as a successful artist; how does family life influence or affect your art?
Johanna: I love that I can work from home as I am nearby whenever my kids need me, and they are always willing to assist me whenever I need input or second opinion. My husband also plays a large role, he assists me with stretching canvases and has an endless faith in me which gives me fuel to keep on going no matter what.
Who are a few artists/people that really inspire you right now, and why?
Johanna: There are so many great artists out there, but my favorites are Gustav Klimt, Sandro Botticelli, Anke Ryba, Dietmar Woelfl, and Icelandic artists such as Lina Rut and Elly Armanns. I can relate to their work and often seek inspiration from.
What memorable responses have you had to your work?
Johanna: People have told me that they can find them self’s in my artwork and others have told me that they didn’t even know that they were that much into art but after seeing one of my paintings they just needed to have it hanging in their home.
What is the best way to reach people that are interested in your art?
Johanna: I use Instagram and Facebook mostly to show my art as I live in Iceland which is a very small island in the north Atlantic sea but I hope to be able to participate in some art fairs in other countries soon.
Are there any upcoming shows or workshops we should know about (or canceled due to the Covid-19 situation)?
Johanna: I was invited to participate in a show that was supposed to be held in Luxembourg earlier this year but got canceled due to Covid-19 like so many others so now I am just focusing on my art and waiting for everything to get back to normal.
Do you see your art as serving a purpose beyond art?
Johanna: For me, art is a way of communication, expression, and healing. It is a way to bring people together and experience even thou we are all different, to take in what you are seeing and what feeling it gives you.
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